How to conduct yourself in the face of adversity
Anyone reading this in March 2022 will be fully aware of what happened at the recent Oscars whereby actor Will Smith slapped comedian Chris Rock following a joke aimed at Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. The fallout across the internet, media and friendship groups across the world has provided many different views and takes on what actually happened, who was in the right and who was in the wrong, so The Gent wanted to approach this from a different angle - how to conduct yourself in the face of adversity.
The Oscars is a globally televised spectacle where celebrities and significant individuals within the film and television industry are invited to reward and celebrate the accomplishments of their peers. Winning an Oscar is seen by many as the Holy Grail within cinema. For those that did not see it or are not aware of the situation that arouse, Chris Rock (an incredibly well-known comedian stateside) directed a joke at Jada Pinkett Smith, stating "Can't wait to see you in GI Jane 2" referring to her shaved head. Jada Pinkett Smith was instantly unamused by the comment however her husband, Will, is seen laughing however within a few seconds he has climbed up onto the stage, approached Rock who was facing Smith expecting a confrontation and Smith proceeded to slap Rock across the cheek before leaving the stage immediately and shouting to Rock "Keep my wife's name out of your f***ing mouth!" Rock, to his credit took the slap, steadied himself, acknowledged the incident before continuing with presenting the award he was there for.
Now, what happened, happened. Everyone has their own opinion on whether it was acceptable for Rock to say what he did, whether Smith was right to do what he did etc etc. The Gent is not here to offer an opinion on the matter but more to use this incident to highlight how a gentleman should approach a situation where they find themselves facing adversity.
First and foremost a gentleman will protect his family - his wife, his children and his home. Yes, we live in a modern world where these individuals are interchangeable in that every member of a family should defend the other members within it. We are speaking from a gentleman's perspective.
A gentleman shall never raise his hand in anger - to anyone! Anger is a powerful emotion that is difficult to control however a gentleman will manage a situation by not succumbing to the emotion it evokes, instead showing restraint and composure. There is no room for violence in a gentleman's world or anyone's world for that matter.
A gentleman shall not raise his voice - he will improve his narrative. Raising ones voice is another indication that one has a lack of self-control, or that anger within you is greater than that to which you can control.
A gentleman will engage but not attack. This engagement can be to defend or deflect but not to attack physically or emotionally. One can stand their ground during an engagement to support their moral and ethical boundaries to which they live their life by but the act of attacking another physically, verbally or emotionally is not becoming of a gentleman.
A gentleman will be the same person in public as they are in private. One set of morals, one set of ethics, one set of standards to live by to be consistent in all parts of ones life.
Gentlemen are not born, they are made, they are crafted from knowledge, experiences, desires and aspirations to improve and be the best versions of themselves. Like anything in life nothing worth having comes easy and there will be learnings along the way. Learning from the past and adapting allows us all to grow and The Gent hopes that Will Smith, Chris Rock and all involved (both directly and indirectly) can take something positive from the incident and be better versions of themselves to day than yesterday.